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Associate Director, Central Valley River Restoration And Flood Management Job Details

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Employer:  American Rivers.
Categories:  Program/Project Mgmt.
Env. Health/Safety
Travel Required:  5-15%
Job Type:  Full Time
Preferred Degree:  Masters
Experience Required:  4-5 years
State/Province:  CA - California
City:  Sacramento
Salary:  non-disclosed
Job Description: 

TITLE: Associate Director, Central Valley River Restoration and Flood Management 
CLASSIFICATION: Associate Director                 
WAGE CATEGORY: Exempt        
REPORTS TO: Director, California Flood Management  
LOCATION: Berkeley, CA or Sacramento, CA

American Rivers is the leading organization working to protect and restore the nation’s rivers and streams.  Rivers connect us to each other, nature, and future generations.  Since 1973, American Rivers has fought to preserve these connections, helping protect and restore more than 150,000 miles of rivers through advocacy efforts, on-the-ground projects, and the annual release of America’s Most Endangered Rivers®.  Headquartered in Washington, DC, American Rivers has offices across the country and more than 100,000 supporters, members, and volunteers nationwide.  American Rivers maintains a positive work environment with a culture of learning, support and balance.  For more information please visit

The Central Valley  Associate Director will help American Rivers protect and restore floodplains in the Sacramento-San Joaquin river and delta system, promote opportunities for Central Valley communities to recreate on Central Valley rivers, and promote a river stewardship ethic among California decision makers. The Associate Director will report to the program Director and will work closely with the numerous organizations the California office has partnered with to promote program objectives, including other conservation groups, government agencies, universities and communities. The Associate Director will contribute policy and technical expertise to our efforts to restore Central Valley floodplain functions and reform flood management policy at the state and national level.

American Rivers’ vision is to restore vibrant river corridors across the Central Valley to solve two of the region’s most persistent problems – devastating floods and declining fisheries. Expanding floodways will restore fish and bird habitat, protect communities from flooding, improve reservoir flexibility and associated water supply reliability, and enhance the quality of life for residents of the valley. American Rivers is building its capacity to take best advantage of four interrelated forums over coming years to restore Central Valley fish and bird habitat, improve water supply security, and protect communities from flooding, including the Central Valley Flood Management Plan, the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, the Delta Stewardship Council and the Delta Plan, and the State Water Resources Control Board.


  • Help develop solutions to technical, legal, and political challenges of expanding flood bypasses on the lower San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers.
  • Identify, map, describe, and evaluate opportunities for flood plain restoration in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys, including reservoir re-operation.
  • Contribute legal, policy and/or scientific/technical expertise to a new study to analyze the water supply, flood risk reduction, and ecological benefits of system-wide floodplain restoration opportunities in the Central Valley.
  • Conduct analysis of local, state and federal laws and policies to identify changes necessary to expedite flood management reform in the Central Valley
  • Conduct research, including literature reviews, interviews with issue experts and stakeholders, and data collection.
  • Review plans and environmental documents.  Draft comments and advocacy letters to shape river management projects and programs.
  • Draft fundraising proposals for restoration projects.
  • Conduct quantitative analyses as needed (Excel-based modeling and data analysis).
  • Represent American Rivers in a leadership role in public planning forums such as the Central Valley Flood Management Plan, the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, and the Delta Stewardship Council’s Delta Plan, and the State Water Resources Control Board to promote floodplain restoration and non-structural flood management strategies.
  • Take a lead role in developing public outreach and education strategy and materials to promote understanding of the benefits of floodplain restoration and non-structural flood management strategies.
  • Participate in outreach to key decision makers in local, state and federal government to promote program goals.

We seek an experienced, organized and mature individual who can work collegially.

  • Master’s degree with an emphasis in environmental planning, engineering, science, economics, or policy or equivalent professional experience requiring complex analytical/quantitative methods and skills. Law degree considered.
  • Minimum five years of experience in California river and water policy fields.
  • Excellent understanding of California water law and policy, with focus on flood management, or hydrology/hydraulics and river restoration preferred.
  • A history of involvement in analytically complex projects and the ability to read and synthesize large amounts of data
  • Strong Excel modeling skills coupled with a solid understanding of and interest in data and metrics
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, including the ability to effectively communicate with senior management officials.
  • Strong public speaking and writing skills required. Superb PowerPoint and presentation skills a plus.
  • Initiative, coupled with creative and strategic thinking.
  • An insightful, curious, pragmatic, and strategic mind with a good sense of humor
  • Willingness to travel

Salary is commensurate with experience. Full-time employee benefits include dental, health, and life insurance, retirement plan, and generous leave time.

The application deadline is November 15, 2012. Applications will be considered immediately. Applicants should submit a resume and cover letter to American Rivers, Attn: CA River Restoration and Flood Mgmt. Position, 1101 14th Street NW, Suite 1400, Washington, DC 20005; or and with “Application for CA River Restoration and Flood Mgmt. Position” in the subject line. No phone calls please.

American Rivers is an Equal Opportunity Employer

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